“The independence of the government in policy making decisions is hampered if foreign loans are taken”
That was the message disseminated by the panelists of a seminar on ‘Debt Situation In Bangladesh’ on November 19, 2011 arranged by SUPRO (Campaign For Good Governance). This was a scheduled event of the ongoing South Asia Social Forum 2011 which took place in the Central Gallery (2nd Floor), Department of Botany (Curzon Hall Area) of Dhaka University.
In this seminar discussants showed that Debt with condition is impeding common and poor people’s access to essential public services. Matti Kohenen of the Tax Justice Network suggested Bangladeshis to carry on development work with SME loans to get better leverage on interests. Associate Professor Riyad Chowdhury of NAEM said that the government should have a policy for foreign loans and grants. The benefits and success of the loans depend on who is receiving the loan and for what.
Dr. Atia waris, an academician and researcher from Kenya University said that in countries like Bangladesh if the corporate taxes are collected properly, the national budget expenditures can be met without foreign debt. She said that foreign debts are usually utilized in unproductive sectors like secondary share market or real estates and is subject to corruption. So foreign debt induces piling of more debt through accumulation of interest.
The event was moderated by Mohiuddin Ahmed. [Source: press release]